You may need to keep some papers confidential if you share a computer with others. Depending on whatever version of Microsoft® Windows® your machine is running, there are numerous options. If you’re not sure which version of Windows your machine uses, click here for additional information. Each user who uses a single computer should have their own account. This makes it easier for everyone to get their hands on the applications and data they want.
How to password protect a folder
When a folder is password-protected, you must provide a password to view the list of documents in the folder. Individual files can also be password-protected, either in a password-protected folder or in a folder that is not password-protected. For files and directories, the method is the same.
- Navigate to the folder you want to password-protect in Windows Explorer. Select the folder with a right-click.
- From the menu, choose Properties. On the resulting dialog, select the General tab.
- To safeguard data, go to the Advanced tab and select Encrypt content. Click the OK button. The username and password you used on Windows will be utilized.
- To make sure you can access the folder, double-click it.
Windows 8 and Windows 10In Windows 8 and Windows 10, you can’t use Windows to password-protect a folder. You’ll need to use a zipped folder or use third-party software. If you do decide to utilize third-party software, be sure you get it from a trustworthy source.
Zipped folderIf your version of Windows does not allow password protection, password-protecting a compressed file is a viable option. You can apply a password to the files you want to secure by putting them in a zip file.
- Select and right-click the files you want to put into a zipped file in Windows Explorer.
- Select Send to, then Zip Folder from the drop-down menu (compressed). To name and save the folder, follow the prompts.
- Select File and Add Password after double-clicking the zipped file.
- After you’ve filled out the required information, click Apply.
How to hide a folderUnless the Don’t show hidden files, folders, or drives setting is unchecked, when you conceal a folder or file in Windows, the folder or file does not appear in the directory list.
Windows 7, 8, and 10
- Right-click the file or folder you wish to conceal and select “Hide.” Choose Properties.
- Check Hidden in the Attributes section of the General tab.
- Apply the changes.
- Click the File tab in Windows Explorer.
- Select View from the View menu after selecting Options.
- Under the heading Hidden files and folders, select Don’t show hidden files, folders, or drives.